British Columbia

Pesky pet peacock hitches ride on logging truck in search of shiny things

A three-year-old peacock named Romeo, also known as Slippery Pete, has been trying to escape his domestic responsibilities.

Romeo, also known as Slippery Pete, proves to be a bit of a flight risk

Three-year-old Romeo, also called Slippery Pete, sits atop one of the logging trucks he hitched a ride on. (Kevin MacGillivray)

A three-year-old peacock named Romeo — also affectionally known as Slippery Pete — has become a local celebrity in B.C.'s Interior. 

His owner, Deb McDougall, said that like many other creatures, Romeo loves shiny things. He also likes to roost up high.

So, naturally, he's been hitching rides on logging trucks. 

The first time the bird flew the coop was shortly after his mate started nesting and stopped responding to his calls. Romeo was found about two kilometres away — not an easy task for a bird that doesn't fly particularly well.

McDougall said there has been logging near her property, and drivers often use her driveway to stop and inspect their trucks. 

"Our peacock, he likes to do things, he likes to be up high and he loves shiny things because he can see his reflection in it. So I think the logging truck being right there was just too tempting for him," McDougall told Daybreak Kamloops guest host Doug Herbert. 

"And he hopped up and around and off he went."


A few days later, Heffley Creek residents shared photos of an unusual sighting in the area, about 10 kilometres from the McDougall nest. 

"We don't know how else he would get 10 kilometres away from home," McDougall said.

A hunt for the bold peacock ensued, which McDougall described as a "horror show" as they chased him around the busy highway leading up to Sun Peaks. 

A peacock who loves shiny things and high perching spots takes a ride on a logging truck. (Kevin MacGillivray)

"We would get close to catching him and then he would just fly away and hide," McDougall said. 

She considered capturing the bird by using a mirror, so he could stare at himself in the shiny object.

He was eventually caught when McDougall lured him in with peanuts. 

"I walked up and grabbed both hands on a six-foot tail and held on," McDougall said.

"And of course, he was bucking and flying. And I threw him in my car and drove him home and right into the pen."

It would seem he was trying to escape his family — he had a peahen and chicks waiting back home. As soon as his spouse and offspring arrived on the scene, he strutted off to find something shiny he could see his reflection in.

Romeo has since stayed home, and McDougall said the logging is complete in the area so he won't likely have the same opportunity to make a run for it.

"It was all fabulous and it came to a happy ending," McDougall said.

To hear Deb McDougall's interview on CBC's Daybreak Kamloops, click here: 

With files from Daybreak Kamloops